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  • Timothy Morris

Family Portraits with Efficiency and Accuracy

Updated: Feb 22

maine wedding photographer - family portrait

Here are a few quick tips to make either the family portrait part of your wedding go smoothly, or any family portrait session when you're dealing with larger amounts of people and want multiple combinations.

Inspect Everyone

Make sure everyone has removed phones, hair ties, knives, and anything else that shouldn't be in the picture. Then make sure all ties, necklaces, and any other accessories are positioned where they should be. Typically I like to have the whole group pose together first, this is when I as the photographer will check everyone, but if my client is already on it, this can be a huge time saver.

Set Expectations

If your goal is to quickly get through these, make it clear to your family that that is the objective, if everyone is on the same page it makes for an easy session. If it's a wedding be sure they all know where to be for the pictures, the easiest thing to do is to have them at the ceremony site immediately after the ceremony before anyone has time to run away.

Tip: Leave plenty of time! Check out our post on planning a timeline


Provide your photographer with exactly who you want in what picture, it's a million times easier to take a few minutes before your wedding or family portrait session to think of what combinations you want than to try and come up with it on the spot. If you're working a flow like this make sure your family knows that's what is happening, and let them know if there are any combinations of family members they want they can let the photographer know after you get through the pre-designed ones.

Here is a sample of a family portrait shot list for a wedding, I have also attached a word doc file that can be edited. (Be sure to use names that the photographer can call out not just titles like mom, brother, maid of honor).

Groom: Jim Halpert

Bride: Pam Beesly

Maid of Honor: Angela Martin

Brides Maids: Kelly Kapoor, Jan Levinson, Karen Fillipeli

Best Man: Dwight Schrute

Groomsmen: Ryan Howard, Andy Bernard, Oscar Martinez

Father of Groom: Creed Bratton

Mother of Groom: Phyllis Vance

Brother of Groom: Toby Flenderson

Father of Bride: Michael Scott

Mother of Bride: Holly Flax

Sister of Bride: Cathy Simms

Group Photo


Wedding Party

Jim, Pam, Angela, Kelly, Jan, Karen, Dwight, Ryan, Andy, Oscar

Bride and Bridesmaids

Pan, Angela, Kelly, Jan Karen

Groom and Groomsmen

Dwight, Ryan, Andy, Oscar

Bride and Groom and each of these individually:

Angela, Dwight, Kelly, Jan, Karen, Ryan, Andy, Oscar

Bridal Family

Pam, Michael, Holly, Cathy

Pam, Jim, Michael, Holly, Cathy

Pam, Jim, Micael, Holly

Pam, Jim, Cathay

Groom’s Family

Jim, Creed, Phyllis, Toby

Jim, Pam, Creed, Phyllis, Toby

Jim, Pam, Creed, Phyllis

Jim, Pam, Toby

Download DOCX • 8KB

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